The question of can the Holy Spirit leave a backslider is a very common question asked by many Christians including backslidden Christian in the Christian circles.
To answer the question of whether the Holy Spirit does leave a backslider when they backslide and go back into sin, we will need to look into the bible.
As the bible is the only book that can answer such a question of whether the Holy Spirit leaves the backslider or not when they turn away from the Lord Jesus Christ and into the world.
Does The Holy Spirit Leave A Backslider?
The Bible states in Isaiah 59:2 that sin separates us from God and if we continue to live in our sins after we have been born again, can we expect to be filled with the Holy Spirit?
It’s clear from the above verse that the Holy Spirit can indeed leave a backslider or backslidden Christian who’s gone back into sin as the Holy Spirit Cannot dwell in the presence or midst of sin.
This is not to say that the Holy Spirit will stop providing conviction for the backslider who has fallen away from the Lord but if the person does not repent and turn back, then eventually even the conviction of the Holy Spirit will cease.
Scripture tells us in 1 John 3:9 that, “No one who is born of God will continue to sin, because God’s seed remains in him; he cannot go on sinning, because he has been born of God.”
While this verse speaks of a true Christian who has an intimate relationship with Christ and is abiding in Him, it also shows us that a true believer can abandon their Christian faith and fall into sin and even remain there.
This is what happens when the believer fails to rely on Christ Jesus and instead relies on his own strength and wisdom to live his Christian life. In doing so, he puts himself in harm’s way by exposing himself to temptation and sin.
Believers Warned Of Backsliding.
1 John warns believers about walking in darkness and states that If we claim to have fellowship with him yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live by the truth. But if we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship with Him
In 1 Corinthians 6:19, we are told that our bodies are temples of the Holy Ghost who dwells in us and how can the Holy Spirit reign in you if your body which is supposed to be the temple of God’s Spirit is defied by sin?
Since the Holy Spirit just like God the Father and Jesus Christ the Son in the trinity is holy and hates sin, it’s clear that indeed the Holy Spirit doesn’t leave a backslider who chooses to reject the Lord Jesus Christ and chooses to go back into sin.
We are told in Romans 8:9 that if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Christ. As believers in Christ Jesus, we know that the Holy Spirit dwells within us from the moment of our salvation.
Psalms 139:7-10 speaks of God’s Spirit coming into our lives at the time of our birth as well as at the time of our new birth in Christ. The Holy Spirit is there for all believers because He resides in all true believers (1 Corinthians 3:16), and He guides all true believers (John 16:13).
Why The Holy Spirit Leaves A Backslider?
The simple answer to that question is sin and since the Holy Spirit is holy, He can’t dwell in the presence of sin and iniquity.
But even if the Holy Ghost does leave the backslider, He won’t stop trying to convict the backslider to return and be restored unto the Lord if they have lost their salvation.
You must remember that the Holy Spirit is what is responsible for convicting a person of their sins so that they can see the need for salvation in their lives which brings about eternal life and saves a sinner from the wrath to come (1 Thessalonians 1:10).
The bible also says that the willful and continual rejection of salvation is the only sin that cannot be forgiven because if you continue rejecting salvation willfully, the Holy Ghost may no longer convict you of your sins due to your hardened heart.
And without the Holy Spirit to convict you of your sins, obtaining salvation becomes impossible and you become lost and buried in your sins without even you knowing it until it’s too late on your death bed.
Paul also warned believers that they could fall away from God (Ephesians 5:5-7). He said this not just to one person but to all believers. This means that no Christian is immune to falling away, including you.
The apostle Paul also tells us that we can grieve and quench the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 4:30; 1 Thessalonians 5:19). This is what a backslider does. He or she keeps on sinning and doing things that are displeasing to God, which grieves and quenches the Holy Spirit.
Can Backsliders Be Restored?
Yes, they can be restored. What the Bible says is that backsliders will be restored. The apostle Peter said, “And when they had preached the Gospel to that city and made many disciples, they returned to Lystra and to Iconium and to Antioch” (Acts 14:21).
As you can see from the above scripture, the Christians had turned away from the Lord in Antioch. They were backsliding, but God restored them. He got them back into the ministry. If you have fallen away from God, He wants to restore you.
But you must be willing to be restored to the Lord Jesus Christ in your heart if you have fallen away from grace or have abandoned your Christian faith.
Remember, our Lord Jesus Christ will never force you to love Him even if He wants you to nor will He ever force His salvation on you if you aren’t willing to abandon your sinful lifestyle yet which you may be enjoying.
So, if you want restoration, all you need to do is genuinely repent of your backsliding and the Lord will fully restore you stronger than ever before and heal your backsliding as He promised in Jeremiah 3:22.
If the Holy Spirit is truly a part of a believer’s life, he will never leave that life. However, if one chooses to withdraw himself from the church and return to his old life, the Holy Spirit will no longer be able to dwell within that life. While that is certainly sad news, it is not at all earth-shattering. I hope this post answered your question. Feel free to comment below on what you have read or if you have further questions. Stay blessed and don’t forget to share.
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- 13 Major Characteristics Of A True Christian [+ Sermon].
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